COLLEGE STATION, Texas—Senior co-captain Colin Hoover posted a victory at No. 3 singles for Texas A&M against Big 12 regular-season champion Oklahoma in the semifinals of the Big 12 Championships being held at the George P. Mitchell Tennis Center, but OU posted a 4-1 win to advance to the Big 12 Championship match at 12 noon on Sunday.
“They (OU) won five out of the six first sets, and like I knew we would, we battled back and gave ourselves a chance,” Texas A&M head coach Steve Denton said. “We just dug too deep of a hole for ourselves. We had a chance to win a couple more matches and maybe (Alexis) Klegou wins and that puts a little more pressure on them. They deserved to win, because they were a little bit better team than we were today.”
OU jumped out to a 1-0 lead by posting victories at No. 2 and No. 3 doubles and as Coach Denton explained, won five of the six first sets in singles. A&M’s co-captain, Alexis Klegou who is ranked No. 34, posted a 6-3 victory in the first set at No. 1 singles over OU’s 14th-ranked player Costin Paval. The two were tied in the second set at six games apiece when the match was clinched.
OU would add to the lead with victories at No. 2 singles with No. 63 Guillermo Alcorta posting a straight sets, 6-3, 6-1, victory over A&M’s Junior Ore. Then, the Sooners’ No. 97 Dane Webb defeated John Lewis in straight sets, 6-4, 6-1 to give OU a 3-0 advantage.
Texas A&M’s Hoover, from Victoria, Texas, was the No. 3 singles champion for the Big 12 regular season. He dropped the first set, 6-1, but bounced back to win the second set in identical fashion, 6-1. Hoover closed out his match at 6-4 in the third to cut the lead to 3-1.
OU’s Peerakit Siributwong took the first set from A&M freshman Jeremy Efferding in a tiebreaker 7-6 (6) and closed out his match and the team score with a 7-5 win in the second set to give OU the 4-1 advantage.
The win improves the 12th-ranked OU record to 17-3 on the season and A&M falls to 13-14. The Sooners will face Baylor at 12 noon.
This marked the fifth straight year for the Aggies to reach the semifinals of the Big 12 Championships.